The queen has been dethroned. Holly Holm completed the biggest upset in MMA history Sunday when she knocked out Ronda Rousey to win the UFC bantamweight championship at UFC 193 in Melbourne, Australia.
Rousey, bullish as always, refused to touch Holly Holm’s gloves before the fight. Vegas gave Holm +700 odds to win the bout. For those who follow MMA, this was supposed to be just another day in the office for the 12-0 Rousey – who won most of her dozen bouts in less than a minute.
Holm had other ideas. While Rousey came in swinging wildly with punches, Holm circled from the outside and connected with a hard combination that include straight punches to the jaw. Holm, the former professional world boxing champion, proved why she was easily the toughest opponent Rousey had ever come across.
Rousey’s world came crashing down in Round 2 when Holm, a kickboxer, struck a ferocious left head kick to complete the monumental upset. The bout ended at the 59-second mark of the second round, after Holm had already stunned the champion multiple times with furious punches. Rousey, looking desperate for the first time in her career, tried to close into a clinch but Holm broke off to an angle and delivered a clean left head kick to the jawline that rendered ‘Rowdy’ unconscious.
“Getting in here, I just felt so much support I thought, ‘How can I not do this with all this support?’ Holm said after the bout. “I had the best coaching, from standup to grappling to wrestling. I have to say, everything we worked on presented itself in the fight. Every grab she tried to get, on the cage, I have not spent this much time in the gym before any fight in my life.”
Holm became only the second bantamweight champion in UFC history.
Winner: Holly Holm, KO, round 2.